Multi Purpose Taxi Program (MPTP) Department of Infrastructure (DOI) Victorian Taxi Directorate (VTD) Membership Applicant Information For you to Read and Keep What is the Multi Purpose Taxi Program (MPTP)? The Multi Purpose Taxi Program provides a 50 per cent discount on taxi fares (up to a maximum of $30 per trip) for eligible people. The program aims to improve the accessibility of transport services for Victorians with a severe and permanent disability that significantly restricts their mobility and prevents them from independently accessing public transport. Who administers the MPTP? The MPTP is a State Government subsidy program administered by the Victorian Taxi Directorate (VTD), Department of Infrastructure. Who is eligible for the MPTP? Permanent residents of Victoria are eligible for the MPTP if they have a severe and permanent* disability, which: • severely limits mobility and prevents the use of public transport, and / or • prevents independent travel on public transport. *Permanent: being for the term of a person’s life and not expected to improve. Applicants for the MPTP or, where the application is being made by or on behalf of a dependant child, the person responsible for the child should hold an eligible card listed below. Applicants (or, where relevant, their families) who do not hold an eligible card but who are experiencing financial hardship may also be assessed for the MPTP. People requiring the permanent use of a wheelchair are exempted from the need to hold an eligible card. Eligible cards include the following: • Veterans’ Affairs Cards - Pensioner Concession Card, gold Repatriation Health Card, gold Repatriation Health Card (TPI - Totally permanently incapacitated), gold Repatriation Health Card (War widow), gold Repatriation Health Card (War widower). • Pensioner Concession Cards - Age Pension, Disability Support Pension, Single Parenting Payment, Carer Payment, Mature Age Allowance, Wife Pension, Widow B Pension. • Health Care Cards (HCC) - note code in brackets - Newstart Allowance HCC (NS), Youth Allowance HCC (YA), Sickness Allowance HCC (SA), Widow Allowance HCC (WA), Special Benefit HCC (SpB). Applications can also be made for dependent children aged under 21, or qualifying dependent full-time students aged 21 to 24 years. Note: Dependent means that a child or student is either:• 2 to 15 years old, or • 16 to 24 years old and either has an annual income less than $8,614 or is receiving a Prescribed Education Scheme payment such as ABSTUDY; or • not receiving a pension, a Labour Market Program payment of under 21 years old benefit such as Youth Allowance. PLEASE RETAIN THIS INFORMATION SHEET. YOU MAY NEED TO READ IT AGAIN LATER. How do people join the MPTP? An application can be obtained from the Victorian Taxi Directorate (refer to contact details). The application form must be completed by the applicant or, where the applicant is incapable of consenting on their own behalf, the applicant’s authorised representative. Information must also be provided by the applicant’s doctor, or optometrist/ophthalmologist if the disability is vision related. Additional information from specialists may also be required. Once complete, the form should be submitted to the Victorian Taxi Directorate for assessment of eligibility. Where eligibility is unclear, additional information may be sought from the applicant and/or their doctor or specialist. The Victorian Taxi Directorate may also seek independent medical or specialist advice on particular applications and/or refer the application to the MPTP Panel for consideration. Any additional testing required by the Victorian Taxi Directorate will be undertaken at the applicant’s expense. Where relevant the Victorian Taxi Directorate will verify the information provided by applicants about their eligible cards with Centrelink or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs. What is the role of the MPTP Panel? The role of the MPTP Panel is to monitor the quality, effectiveness and long term sustainability of the MPTP. The MPTP Panel advises the Victorian Taxi Directorate on membership eligibility and requests for additional subsidy due to exceptional circumstances. What benefits are available to MPTP members? Members can travel in any Victorian licensed taxi and pay 50 per cent of the metered fare, up to a maximum discount of $30 per trip. Travel beyond that amount must be paid for at the full fare. An annual subsidy cap of $1,030 per year will apply to members, excluding members permanently requiring the use of a wheelchair, veterans with an Extreme Disability Adjustment (EDA) or Totally and Permanently Incapacitated (TPI) endorsement, and some members with specific disabilities. A separate application form is available to MPTP members to request additional subsidy above the $1,030 cap where exceptional circumstances apply. Program funds for exceptional circumstances are allocated based on priorities such as employment, education, training, day programs, health-related appointments, volunteering or visiting a spouse or partner in a nursing home. Further information about applying for additional subsidy can be obtained from the Victorian Taxi Directorate. (refer to contact details). How much does a membership card cost? Members are charged for the issue, renewal and replacement of cards. The cards have a life span of six years and will cost $16.50. What trips are not eligible under the MPTP? Trips that are not covered by the Multi Purpose Taxi Program subsidy include: • A trip covered by insurance, for example, Transport Accident Commission (TAC). • Trips that are directly or indirectly subsidised by any State or Commonwealth Government Department or Agency. Terms and conditions of MPTP membership 1. The MPTP membership card can only be used by the person whose details are printed on the card. 2. The MPTP membership card can only be used for travel in taxi-cabs that have a licence to operate in Victoria, or with interstate vouchers from the Victorian Taxi Directorate in interstate taxi-cabs. 3. The MPTP member must be travelling in the taxi to receive the subsidy for that trip. Carers, companions or family members may travel in the taxi with the MPTP member. 4. Only one subsidy applies to any single trip. 5. The MPTP membership card is not transferable and must not be used by anyone other than the member whose details appear on the card. 6. The MPTP membership card cannot be used to send parcels or packages in a taxi-cab. 7. Other than during a taxi trip, the MPTP member or carer must keep the card in their possession at all times. 8. MPTP membership does not guarantee that appropriate taxi transport will be available on request. 9. The MPTP membership card cannot be used with any other transport concessions or subsidies. If a trip or part of a trip is covered by insurance, for example, by the Transport Accident Commission (TAC), or paid for by any State or Commonwealth Department or Agency, the MPTP card cannot be used. 10. MPTP membership will be cancelled if the member’s circumstances change and he or she stops being eligible. 11. The MPTP member who has been given an exemption from eligibility or the annual subsidy cap may have that exemption withdrawn, cancelled or amended. 12. The MPTP member must report inappropriate or suspicious use of a MPTP membership card to the VTD as soon as possible. 13. The MPTP member must report the loss or theft of a MPTP membership card to the VTD as soon as possible. 14. MPTP membership may be cancelled if a member does not comply with these terms and conditions. The Victorian Taxi Directorate may also take legal action. 15. It is understood that the applicant or the Authorised Representative understands and accepts the terms and conditions of MPTP membership when they sign an application form. Carriage of wheelchairs and scooters MPTP members who require permanent use of a wheelchair or scooter are provided with a wheelchair or scooter membership card. This card ensures that the taxi driver receives an additional lifting surcharge for every MPTP trip. This surcharge is paid by Government. MPTP members DO NOT pay this surcharge. Members with collapsible wheelchairs who are able to transfer into standard taxi cab seats may choose to use conventional taxis. Wheelchairs must be restrained to prevent movement during the journey. Please note, the carriage of scooters is limited because: • not all wheelchair accessible taxis are capable of carrying scooters, and • scooters must be adapted so that they can be restrained. Passengers using scooters must transfer to a conventional passenger seat and use a seat belt. Booking a taxi Metropolitan Melbourne - For trips in the Melbourne metropolitan area contact your local depot. Members who contact a driver directly and do not go through a taxi depot are still able to use their MPTP subsidy card. Wheelchair accessible taxis can be booked through either: • Silver Top Taxis by telephoning (03) 8413 7202 or • Yellow Cabs by telephoning (03) 9277 3877 Regional Victoria - To book a taxi in regional and rural areas, contact your local taxi depot. What if you lose your card or it doesn’t work? If the membership card is lost, or has been misplaced or stolen, contact the Victorian Taxi Directorate as soon as possible so that the card can be turned off electronically to prevent misuse. As previously indicated, a charge of $16.50 will be made for the replacement of a membership card. Contact the Victorian Taxi Directorate before making payment as many lost cards are handed into the Victorian Taxi Directorate. Where there are extenuating circumstances, the need to pay for the replacement card may be waived. Please contact the Victorian Taxi Directorate for consideration. If the card is thought to be faulty, it should be sent to the Victorian Taxi Directorate for testing. Where a card is proven to be faulty it will be replaced free of charge. If your card doesn’t work, you may still complete the trip. The EFTPO’s terminal will advise the driver under which circumstances an emergency paper voucher is permitted to be used. Otherwise, you will be required to pay full fare, obtain a receipt and contact the Victorian Taxi Directorate. Interstate travel A National Scheme of reciprocity exists whereby Victorian members have the ability to travel in taxis in other states for a limited time and retain the level of subsidy that they are entitled to in their home state. Prior to travelling interstate, the Multi Purpose Taxi Program members must contact the Victorian Taxi Directorate to obtain the appropriate number of interstate vouchers. Contacts for further information:Telephone Melbourne Metropolitan Callers (03) 9320 4360 Telephone Country Callers 1800 638 802 Postal Address PO Box 666, North Melbourne Vic 3051 Office Address Level 6, 14-20 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne Vic 3051 Internet Address http://www.taxi.vic.gov.au Email Address firstname.lastname@example.org Taxi feedback Line Please contact the Victorian Taxi Directorate Feedback line on (03) 9320 4300 or 1800 638 802 (country callers) if you have a complaint or a compliment to make about your taxi trip.